The following blog and respective podcast episode is from Chad Frantzen, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and the CEO of WealthBuilders Investment Services.
It isn’t hard to make a difference with your money. In fact, now it’s easier than ever to make conscious decisions about how to allocate your money in ways that don’t violate your personal beliefs. With everything going on politically in today’s day and age, it has never been more important to make educated decisions about where your money goes. You need to fight for what you believe when it comes to how you vote, what businesses you support, and how you invest. This is where Biblically Responsible Investing enters the scene.
Biblically Responsible Investing (BRI) is a subset of pro-values investing that considers the overall impact of a company or investment fund regarding Christian ethics–not just its profit potential. This doesn’t mean that Biblically Responsible Investments are less profitable than ‘normal’ investments. In fact, in several cases the opposite has been proven (but we’ll get to that later.)
I encourage the clients I work with to research companies before they support them through their purchases. Does the company’s respective mission align with the consumer’s ethical concerns? Shopping at a certain place might be convenient. However, you have to weigh that convenience with the fact that a certain company may support things that don’t match up with a biblical worldview, such as Planned Parenthood or human trafficking.
That all has to do with how you spend your money. However, conscious investing is even more important than conscious spending. When you invest, you gain ownership. So, when you invest in a company, you essentially say that you endorse the growth and success of that company.
Examples of Biblically Responsible Investments
Biblically Responsible Investments don’t have to pledge to Christianity. Rather, they just have to avoid supplying revenue to causes that directly oppose Christian values. So, they can be ‘neutral’ and still qualify.
Some examples are MasterCard, Costco, Tractor Supply Company, Rosetta Stone, etc. At WealthBuilders Investment Services, we like stocks that are profitable, and stocks that lean more conservatively or are neutral.
What does the Bible Say About Investing?
The Parable of the Talents in Matthew 25:14-30 is a great place to discover what does the Bible says about investing. Jesus compares the Kingdom of Heaven to “be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property.” The servants in the parable are held accountable for how they steward their master’s property while He’s away. Similarly, we are going to be held accountable for how we steward the resources God has given us in our lifetime. Verse 29 says, “For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.”
I am personally convicted to be faithful with the money God entrusts me to steward. I’m not going to sow the resources He’s blessed me with into organizations that counter His mission. When the Lord asks us to give an account for our resources, we want to be able to tell Him that we did our best.
Related: 5 Lessons I Learned From The Parable of The Talents About Investing
Is Biblically Responsible Investing Profitable?
When I first started researching BRI, I had the same concern. Many of the biblically responsible stocks I found were new, too expensive, and didn’t have a lot of depth. Fortunately, there have been hundreds of millions of dollars put into developing impact investments such as BRI. Now there are many options to choose from for basically any budget.
A 20-year study examined the S&P 500 (the 500 largest publicly traded companies) in relation to BRI stocks. It found that if you invested in the S&P 500 but screened out companies that were in violation of biblical ethics, you would have practically identical returns to if you invested in the entire S&P index from 2000-2019. Many people aren’t aware of the statistics (or they choose to ignore them.) They let the ‘fear of missing out’ make their investment decisions.
Do you want become a Biblically Responsible Investor but don’t necessarily want to do the research and work yourself? If so, contact WealthBuilders Investment Services at https://authenticwealth.co/wealthbuilders. We will help you analyze your current portfolio and set it up to further the Kingdom of God!
Click Here to listen to ‘Biblically Responsible Investing’ on The WealthBuilders Podcast!
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where can I find my U.S.G. score?
Hello Lisa! Thank you for connecting to WealthBuilders.
There are a few different places you can check to find your score. If you hold an account at a major financial firm such as Merrill Lynch, your personal ESG score will be listed on your account with your other personal details. You can also check any of the main ESG monitoring companies’ websites. (https://theimpactinvestor.com/calculate-individual-esg-score/#:~:text=There%20are%20a%20few%20different,main%20ESG%20monitoring%20companies'%20websites.)
How do we access the two lists of Biblically responsible and non Biblically responsible investments/companies?
Hello Susan! You can find it on https://www.wealthbuilders.org/invest/